Giacomo Puccini, "Tosca", Stadttheater Bremerhaven

Ute Schalz-Laurenze, Neue Musikzeitung, 24.09.2023

And Marc Niemann with the Philharmonic Orchestra: he reaches out with forward-storming force, but also finds beautiful and many intermediate tones that clearly included the orchestra in the cheers. The orchestral quality worked above all in a subliminally lurking and threatening character. The music permanently opens up new spaces, real or virtual or mental.

Wolfgang Denker, Weser-Kurier, 24.09.2023

And another trump card is played by Marc Niemann and the Philharmonic Orchestra Bremerhaven. Niemann brings out all the tonal nuances of Puccini's music in a way that makes sense. Drama and lyricism are excellently balanced. The torture scenes are powerfully fueled, the beginning of the third act is a subtle sonic painting.

Christine Gorny, Radio Bremen, 25.09.2023

The Philharmonic Orchestra of Bremerhaven, conducted by Marc Niemann, provided a coherent and sensitive accompaniment to this concentrated and touching production.

Jules Massenet, "Werther", Stadttheater Bremerhaven

Ute Schalz-Laurenze, Neue Musikzeitung, 14.04.2023

An incendiary soul thriller - "Werther" at Bremerhaven Theatre. In Sam Brown's direction, the "Drame lyrique", written in 1886 and premiered in Vienna in 1892, is transformed from a triangular story that is actually quite outdated into an outstandingly gripping thriller of the soul. This is also helped by the musical direction of Marc Niemann, who works out the subtly used leitmotifs just as clearly as a pathos that is rousing in the best sense of the word, and thus joins the ranks of performances that have been unbrokenly successful since 1970. This music, sometimes sweet, seductive and clearly anchored in the "Belle Époque", always remains a matter of taste. Yet it is outstanding how Niemann manages to bring out the catastrophe both lurking in the underground and erupting directly.

Wolfgang Denker, Weser-Kurier, 27.03.2023

Marc Niemann on the podium of the Philharmonic Orchestra Bremerhaven conducts Massenet's suggestive music with so much heart and soul that it is a pure joy. Even the massive opening bars, filled with tragedy, mark the path he is taking. The emotional force of this opera is clear at every moment. The performance of the orchestra is outstanding, even the finest sound moods (for example the saxophone in Charlotte's aria) are subtly realised.
Symphony concert "Beethoven pur!", Classical Philharmonic Bonn

Fritz Herzog, General Anzeiger Bonn, 04.10.22

With Marc Niemann, Musical Director of Bremerhaven, an excellent conductor was able to animate the large Classical Philharmonic Orchestra Bonn to top performances.
Even Beethoven's first incidental music, "The Creatures of Prometheus", revealed the evening's thematic framework. And so Niemann, finely balanced between the instruments, emphasised the vital dance character through flaming "con brio", not without letting Beethoven's humour speak in the wood winds.
Beethoven's Seventh - as a crowning finale: the symphony apostrophised by Richard Wagner as the "apotheosis of dance" with its bacchanalian unleashed eruptive power was realised by Niemann and the classical Philharmonic in a way whose detailed sound language simply put the reference reading of a Carlos Kleiber in the shade. Chapeau!

Giuseppe Verdi, "Macbeth", Stadttheater Bremerhaven

Markus Wilks, Opernglas, 10/2022

This captivating harmony of stage and orchestra pit is also due to GMD Marc Niemann, who has created an outstanding interpretation with the Philharmonic Orchestra Bremerhaven. The nervous and brutal aspects of the music become just as clear as the sad, sombre and beautiful - all with an unusually detailed rhetorical sound language and a great deal of "Italianità".

Ute Schalz-Laurenze, Neue Musik Zeitung, 18.09.2022

Standing ovations are a common occurrence at concerts, but rarer at the opera. But now, after the premiere of Giuseppe Verdi's "Macbeth" in Bremerhaven, the entire audience rose in unison. What had impressed them so much?

Most certainly the music under the direction of Marc Niemann (General Music Director since 2014), who elicited an enormous wealth of colours, gestures and accents from the Bremerhaven Philharmonic Orchestra and the opera choir (led by Mario El Fakih Hernández). It was almost as if the staging of Verdi's outsider work was played out with its force and garishness in the musical interpretation. Niemann's conducting beautifully revealed the contours of the work: pale colours, thrilling crescendos, ghostly moods, menacing sounds to which one could barely hear the traditional symphony orchestra.

Sebastian Loskant, Nordseezeitung, 18.09.2022

In the Philharmonic Orchestra under Marc Niemann, the Parisian version of 1865 was phenomenally effective: racy, concise and very atmospheric. The same was true of the choir under Mario El Fakih Hernandez, who sounded united and pointed in all their actions. [...] King class everywhere

Wolfgang Denker, Weser Kurier, 19.09.2022

Only the very best can be said about the musical side. Marc Niemann and the Philharmonic Orchestra Bremerhaven not only play with great concentration and flawlessness. They also set highly dramatic accents, give the music sometimes rousing momentum with exactly the right tempi and leave the singers room to breathe. It is a rendition that captivates and thrills from the first bar to the last.

concerto di chiusura, Cantiere Internazionale d'Arte

Marco Rainaldi,, 01.08.2022

On the last evening of the Cantiere di Montepulciano, one of the most breathtaking sides of Sergei Prokofieff's Second Piano Concerto opens up to us under the perfect baton of Marc Niemann, who, we have not forgotten, made the interpretation of Colasanti's composition so compelling. [...] And even in this case, as with Colasanti, when the performance is over, you don't want to leave your chair and keep listening, as happens with Robert Schumann's Fourth Symphony, which Niemann conducts like a very experienced conductor, almost seeming to have the composer's power within him. He is very good, he has flair, he has elegance and above all he is so precise in his interpretation that one can conclude that he has a great knowledge of the repertoire. The Rhenish is also a symphony whose fourth movement is a real chorale, a glorification of Bach's genius, and as we know, Schumann loved Johann Sebastian so much that he invoked him as a patron deity. A great success for the Orchestra Regionale Toscana, which once again managed to prove that it is one of the best symphony orchestras in our country. No doubt about it!

Gaetano Donizetti, "Rita", Cantiere Internazionale d'Arte die Montepulciano

Elisabetta Torselli, giornale della musica, 20.07.2022

The good news was the brilliant and effective conducting of Marc Niemann and the excellent performance of La Filharmonie - orchestra filarmonica di Firenze despite its very small cast; however, thinking back to past seasons, one basically had the impression that the Cantiere's tradition of reviving small masterpieces of the comic repertoire has stalled a bit. Nevertheless, a hearty success.

Francesco Arturo Saponaro,, 22.07.2022

At the podium of La Filharmonie - Orchestra Filarmonica di Firenze, Marc Niemann concertised and conducted instrumental ensemble and voices with agile assurance. So that Donizetti's signature - wittily also in a self-quotation from Lucia - emerged clearly in the dramatic access, in the profile of the melodies, in the expressive polish, in the urgent rhythm.

L. van Beethoven, Sinfonie Nr.9, Philharmonisches Orchester Bremerhaven

Gerd Klingeberg, Nordseezeitung, 24.06.2022

Under the agile, demanding and motivating baton of chief conductor Marc Niemann, the orchestra carefully intoned the first, not yet very spectacular motifs of the first movement, which were abruptly replaced by powerful, tumultuous outbursts. The ensemble's performance was impressively sharply contoured and designed for the greatest possible transparency of the sound. The frequent, orchestrally concise changes between pleasantly friendly and bristlingly abrupt passages conveyed a high intensity of tension. The scherzo movement was convincing with its constant rhythmic tautness. The lively staccato pulsing. Only briefly interrupted in the trio's middle section, it was particularly fascinating in the shimmering, lively, sometimes almost haunting sequences.

Consecrated character

In contrast, the following Adagio movement sounded softly legato-flowing and with a touch of melancholy. Niemann's tempo guidelines underlined its consecrated character, but avoided any drift into turgidity. The dynamic developments with their long arches were excellently seamless. All this was topped by the gigantic finale, the setting of Schiller's Ode to Joy, introduced with chaotic orchestral thunder.

[...] Tutti sound waves went under the skin. Stormy applause, bravos and standing ovations from the all-round enthusiastic audience for a very successful performance.

Detlev Glanert, "Oceane", Stadttheater Bremerhaven

Wolfgang Denker, Weser Kurier, 03.05.2022

The composer conjures up spherical, delicate tones, relies on melody and vocal line, on dance rhythms such as waltz and polka, and ignites a rapturous spectrum of sounds with powerful choral movements and expressive orchestral outbursts. It is music that simply thrills, especially as Marc Niemann on the podium of the Bremerhaven Philharmonic Orchestra ensures a consistently exciting and convincing performance. The first scene alone is hard to beat for overwhelming effect. The chorus and extra choir (Mario El Fakih Hernández) are also at their best.

Igor Strawinsky, Le Sacre du Printemps / Petruschka, Stadttheater Bremerhaven

Sebastian Loskant, Nordseezeitung, 14.03.2022

In the pit, Marc Niemann proves to be the ideal Stravinsky interpreter. Precision is paired with delicacy (two flutes with the solo trumpet). The Philharmonic Orchestra is at all times equal to its demanding role, despite minor mishaps. [...] Again thunderous applause.

Michael Pitz-Grewenig, Das Orchester 6/2022

General Music Director Marc Niemann deciphered the complex scores intelligently. He proceeded with the utmost conscientiousness, but also kept an eye on the poetic moodiness inherent in these works. The Bremerhaven Philharmonic Orchestra performed with sovereign reliability.

Leokadiya Kashperova, Sinfonie h-moll, op. 4, Philharmonisches Orchester Bremerhaven

Sebastian Loskant, Nordseezeitung, 13.10.2021

With GMD Marc Niemann, this music sounds as masterful as a repertoire piece. The Scherzo with its bassoon quart g-d and the amusing pizzicato ending is ravishingly relaxed, the Andante with its horn chorale haunting. Only in the constantly decelerating finale did Ms. Kashperova make a mistake; the increase à la Bruckner seems rather violent despite the imposing brass crown. [...] Another brilliant composer discovered. Marc Niemann shows taste in his conquests.

Jacques Offenbach, Les Contes d'Hoffmann, Stadttheater Bremerhaven

Markus Wilks, Opernglas, 11/2021

On the one hand, GMD Marc Niemann emphasised the airy, light quality familiar from Offenbach's operettas; on the other hand, he animated the Philharmonic Orchestra, which was usually in very good form, to play with a powerful sound, as in a Verdi opera.

Michael Stange, IOCO 11.11.2021

Marc Niemann and the Philharmonic Orchestra Bremerhaven play a decisive role in the success of the production. Their music is rounded, differentiated and sensitive, with a warm French sound. Through tempo and sound modulations, Barcarole and other evergreens are kept from being kitschy and the work is played with drama, profundity and musical fire.

Sebastian Loskan, Nordseezeitung, 28.09.2021

Fabulous things can also be reported from the pit. Many beautiful solos, fantastic violin shimmering, a crisp horn intermezzo: the Philharmonic Orchestra under GMD Marc Niemann realised Michael Kaye's version fluidly, shining with operetta razzmatazz, lyricism and drama in equal measure.

Emilie Mayer, Sinfonie Nr.3 Philharmonisches Orchester Bremerhaven

Sebastian Loskant, Nordseezeitung, 23.06.2021

Marc Niemann had done meticulous rehearsal work here, conjuring up wit and charm. He pointed out the striking appearances of timpani and bassoon as well as the elegant back and forth between strings and woodwinds in the opening movement, the emphasis on the lower orchestral registers in the Adagio and the dance-like melancholy of the Scherzo.

Richard Strauss "Thus Spoke Zarathustra", Orchestra of the University of the Arts Bremen and Bremerhaven Philharmonic Orchestra

Gerd Klingenberg, Weser Kurier, 27.02.2020

Even the introduction offered goose-pimples moments. Dull low bass rumbling at first, then solemnly rising trumpet fanfares, finally a glittering orchestra tutti: a wonderful "sunrise". [...] the distinct conducting of Marc Niemann kept the giant apparatus on a clear course. After only two weeks of rehearsals, the Ensemble performed with great unity and was in top form, especially when it came to fast and loud parts. The ups and downs between emotional exuberance and calmness, between passion and tedium of life, as indicated in the chapter titles of the composition, were wave-like.

Anton Bruckner, Symphony No. 4, Bremerhaven Philharmonic Orchestra

Gerd Klingenberg, Nordsee Zeitung, 20.06.2019

Unraveling from the mysterious string tremolo and horn motive, gigantic tone clusters of sound suddenly appear, allowing the orchestra to play to its full tutti potential.  With Niemann’s expansive phrasing, opulent kaleidoscopic images emerge; how concrete and vivid these images are felt lies solely in the imagination of the audience. The second movement features melodic soli in the cellos and violas.  A pleasant imitation of bird sounds quietly pulsate in the delicate pizzicato, establishing a lovely and tender background for the rich melodic soli passages sung by the cellos and violas. 

The first highlight is the sharply contoured, precisely executed Scherzo. Characterized by the multi-faceted brass motifs of a wild parforce hunt, which is surprisingly interrupted by invisible bucolic beautiful sound revelry. Even this is decisively topped by the glistening colored, momentarily ebbing away into almost nothingness, but from seemingly inexhaustible energy reserves again and again, a newly fed opulence of entrances reemerge in the Fortissimo finale. Bravo shouts and thunderous applause praise the intoxicating season-end concert igniting the desire for the next season.


William Bolcom, "McTeague - Greed for Gold", Stadttheater Bremerhaven

Dagmar Zurek, Das Orchester 6 / 2019

At first, shimmering soundscapes of the high strings portray the heat of the desert. The sometimes whimpering orchestration and contrasting violent galloping, such as in the wedding scene, establish a diverse orchestral score. The more dramatic the event becomes, the more threatening, eruptive the brass thunderstorm metamorphosizes from the orchestra pit. There are elements of blues, ragtime rhythms, and also a lot of sensual elegiac passages; in which the Philharmonic Orchestra Bremerhaven proves to be wonderfully playful. The General Music Director Marc Niemann exhibits with his conducting an impressive precision and singer-friendliness.

Giacomo Puccini, Madama Butterfly, Stadttheater Bremerhaven

Wolfgang Denker, Nordsee Zeitung 12.27.2018

Musically, there are no wishes left. How Marc Niemann and the Bremerhaven Philharmonic Orchestra present Puccini's music with sensual sonority, and also with a great sense for the finest details, exudes great class.  The sorrowful wallowing in sound when the child appears or when Pinkerton's ship arrives, becomes a pivotal moment in the piece.

Gustav Mahler, Symphony No. 4, Bremerhaven Philharmonic Orchestra

Sebastian Loskant, Nordsee Zeitung, 22.11.2018

... In his masterly transparent interpretation, Marc Niemann made clear in the first movement just how endangered the superficial idyll  is. Through the bells and cello wistfulness, Marc Niemann successfully presents the seemingly childlike songs and marching music.

Paul Hindemith "Im Kampf mit dem Berge", Beethovenfest Bonn

FOCUS online 19.09.2018

The skillful instrumentalization made the small orchestra sometimes sound like a big, full symphony orchestra. The New Philharmonic Orchestra of Westphalia skilled with high tuning and intonation security as well as a very precise tuning of the technically and rhythmically very demanding solos convinced the audience. Conductor Marc Niemann worked with equal precision, which was particularly evident in the perfectly synchronized beginnings and endings of the individual acts. Successfully persuading this evening that the "squaring of the circle": Hindemith's composition stands for itself, as an entity existing without the film.

Johannes Brahms, Symphony No. 3, Bremerhaven Philharmonic Orchestra

Sebastian Loskant, Nordsee-Zeitung, 21.02.2018

This was followed by the 3rd Symphony in F major op.90 by Johannes Brahms, which is rarely heard so transparently. Brahms's orchestral score is commonly considered to be viscous. In contrast, Marc Niemann acted according to the recipe of cooking rice - everything was loose, grainy and did not stick. Thus, the structure of this work was particularly clear. That it constantly oscillates between major and minor tonalities. That drama always retreats into the lyric behavioral. The chamber music middle passages completely renounce the brass and timpani. Constant thoughtfulness seemed to be most valued in this interpretation.

Leo Fall "Madame Pompadour", Schleswig-Holsteinisches Landestheater

Christoph Kalies, Schleswig-Holsteinische Landeszeitung, 12.03.2018

And conductor Marc Niemann works out the satirical parts of Leo Falls' music, allowing the orchestra to indulge in cheeky marches and fierce waltz steps, as well as realize the subtle shades and timbre blends with a charming, daring tempo.

L. van Beethoven, Fidelio, Stadttheater Bremerhaven

Wolfgang Denker, Nordsee-Zeitung 27.12.2017

What determined the qualities of this "Fidelio" - above all worth listening to - were the performances of Marc Niemann and the Bremerhaven Philharmonic Orchestra [...]. Niemann is very committed to Beethoven,which shows the symphony cycle on CD, the penultimate third episode has just been released. The presentation of "Fidelio" proves his access to the music as absolutely consistent and competent. Instantly in the overture he gave weight and size. Niemann and the Bremerhaven Philharmonic Orchestra met the Singspiel character prevailing in the first act, as well as the dramatic suspense and emotionality of the second act. The quartet "Mir ist so wunderbar" was played with symmetry, perfect tempo, and exquisite sound balance. Niemann also found the right approach for the great choir scenes in the finale, which never gave the impression of hollow pathos.